Comparison of Immunizations by Age Group According to 2023 CDC Guidelines (including COVID-19 recommendations) The purpose of this discussion post is to separate by age group CDC recommendations of immunizations. Additionally, to discuss how recommendations may vary with Immunosuppressed patients. Immunization Recommendations for Various Age Groups: Ages 11–24: • Human Papillomavirus (HPV): To protect against cancers caused by HPV. The vaccine is recommended for both males and females, starting at age 11 or 12. (2 dose series) • Tetanus, Diphtheria, and Pertussis (Tdap): A one-time dose is usually given at the age of 11 or 12. • Meningococcal vaccines: Protection against certain types of meningococcal disease. Initial dose at 11 or 12 and a booster dose at 16. • Influenza: Yearly vaccine for seasonal influenza protection. • COVID-19: Depending on updates to the guidelines and potential new strains, booster shots might be recommended for this age group, especially given exposure in schools and colleges. Ages 25–64: • Influenza: Yearly vaccine recommended for everyone, especially for those with certain health conditions, pregnant women, and other high-risk groups. • Td booster: Especially for pregnant women during each pregnancy to protect the newborn from pertussis. Booster every 10 years. • Varicella, MMR, and Hepatitis B: For adults who haven’t been vaccinated as children or are at higher risk. May confirm immunity by blood test titer. • HPV: For those who didn’t get vaccinated when they were younger, up to age 45. • COVID-19: Adults in this age range should follow current recommendations which might include primary series (if not already vaccinated) and potential booster shots, especially if in high-exposure professions or with underlying conditions. • Hepatitis A and B: for those at risk. • Pneumococcal: For those with certain medical conditions. 65 years and older: • Influenza: Yearly vaccine. • Pneumococcal vaccines: (PCV13) and (PPSV23) to protect against infections like pneumonia. • Zoster vaccine: Two doses 2-6 months apart regardless of a previous episode of shingles or previous Zostavax vaccine. • Tdap or Td booster: Tdap once, then Td booster every 10 years to protect against tetanus and diphtheria. • COVID-19: Older adults are at higher risk of severe outcomes from COVID-19. Current guidelines may recommend booster shots at regular intervals after the primary series to maintain high levels of protection. Impact on Immunocompromised Patients or Those on Immunosuppressive Therapy: • General: Patients who are immunocompromised or on immunosuppressive therapy might not mount the same protective immune response to vaccines as those with intact immune systems. Therefore, they might not be as protected or might require additional doses. • Ages 11–24: • HPV vaccination might be of particular importance as immunocompromised individuals can be at a higher risk of persistent HPV infections and associated cancers. However, the efficacy in a compromised system may be diminished. • COVID-19: Immunocompromised individuals in this age group may require additional doses of the vaccine or might receive booster shots earlier than their immunocompetent counterparts. • Ages 25–64: • Live vaccines (like MMR and varicella) are generally contraindicated for severely immunocompromised patients because of the potential for the live virus to replicate and cause disease. • Immunocompromised patients, especially those with chronic conditions, are at a higher risk of complications from influenza and should receive the inactivated influenza vaccine. • COVID-19: This group may require more frequent booster shots, and the efficacy of the vaccine might be lower, necessitating careful monitoring and continued adherence to preventive measures. • 65 years and older: • The efficacy of the zoster vaccine might be decreased in this group if they’re immunocompromised. Still, given the potential severity of shingles in older adults, a discussion with their healthcare provider is critical. • Immunocompromised seniors might benefit from additional doses or more frequent pneumococcal vaccination to ensure protection against pneumonia. COVID-19: Given the dual risk of age and a compromised immune system, it’s imperative for this group to adhere to all current recommendations regarding booster shots and other preventive measures (CDC, 2023). Rural areas have had a higher rate of COVID-19 related deaths due to lower vaccination compliance rates. Encouraging individuals to get vaccinated would dieter from acute illness and hospitalizations (Sun & Monnat, 2022). In summary, age, health status, and the evolving nature of the COVID-19 pandemic play a vital role in determining which vaccines a person should receive. For immunocompromised patients, or those on immunosuppressive therapy, it’s essential to consult with a healthcare provider to adjust the vaccination schedule, weighing benefits and potential risks (CDC, 2020).